You have a growing small business in California. While you want to add employees to your staff, you must do so carefully.
Chron explains the elements of a legal employment contract. Draft agreements that protect you and your workforce.
Understanding employment contracts
You may enter a written or verbal employment agreement. No matter if you imply or strike an explicit contract, both become valid in the eyes of the law. Think about what you discuss with job candidates, as promises you make could become an implied agreement. With explicit contracts, list compensation, position responsibilities and work hours.
Implied employment contracts
Other than verbal statements, you may enter an implied contract through details in company policies or employee handbooks. Sidestep implied agreements by not making promises while speaking with job candidates. The same principle applies to employee handbook language. Make it clear verbally and in writing that your company has an at-will relationship with employees.
Written employment contracts
Double-check the wording you use in written agreements. Other than fundamental details about the role, note your right to add or change job responsibilities. You may also want to note you do not have to offer employee benefits. If you provide benefits, consider noting that you may change them whenever you wish after communicating with employees. Cover your bases by asking new hires to agree to at-will employment rather than enter an employment contract.
By understanding what validates an employment agreement, you protect your interests and your business. Do not let a lack of knowledge land you in hot water with the law.